Fred. Olsen Express Takes Delivery of New Trimaran Ferry

Vessel becomes Spanish operators third Austal trimaran

Austal Philippines has confirmed the delivery of the 118m trimaran fast ferry BAÑADEROS EXPRESS to Fred. Olsen Express.  Delivery of the ship was accepted by Captain Juan Antonio Rojas and his crew on 4 October at a Covid-safe ceremony at Balamban, Cebu, Philippines. 

The vessel had been ordered along with a sister-ship in December 2018.  Sister BAJAMAR EXPRESS was delivered in July 2020.  The contract cost for the pair of ships was AU$190m (approx. €126m at the time).

Austal Philippines President and General Manager Mr Wayne Murray (seated, left) congratulates Captain Juan Antonio Rojas from Fred. Olsen Express (seated, right) at the official handover of the BAÑADEROS EXPRESS, held on board the vessel in Balamban, Cebu. Image: Austal Philippines.

BAÑADEROS EXPRESS can carry 1,100 passengers and 276 cars at a speed of 37 knots.  Her facilities include multiple bars, kiosks, a retail shop, and a children’s play area.  It is expected that she will join BAJAMAR EXPRESS on the Agaete (Gran Canaria) to Santa Cruz de Tenerife route before the end of the year.  This will make it an all-trimaran service.

The delivery of BAÑADEROS EXPRESS took place just days after rival operator Naviera Armas took delivery of the 111m catamaran VOLCÁN DE TAIDIA from Incat.  That ship will also sail with a slightly older sister, VOLCÁN DE TAGORO, on a route between Gran Canara and Tenerife. 

Austal Limited Chief Executive Officer Paddy Gregg said:

“Fred. Olsen Express was the world’s first ferry operator to see the unique value of the Austal trimaran hull to deliver a superior customer experience, operating the 127 metre Benchijigua Express since 2005. Now, with Bajamar Express and Bañaderos Express they have two more trimarans that further enhance their offering to customers and enable the world’s first dedicated trimaran service in the Canary Islands,”.

20th Delivery by Austal Philippines

BAÑADEROS EXPRESS will make her way to Gran Canaria via the Suez Canal.  She is expected to make stops at Singapore and Jeddah (Saudi Arabia) en route.  Her delivery voyage can be tracked on the Fred. Olsen Express website here.

Austal Philippines has delivered the second of two 118 metre trimarans for Fred. Olsen Express; the BAÑADEROS EXPRESS, from the company’s shipyard in Balamban, Cebu. Image: Austal Philippines

Austal Philippines President and General Manager Wayne Murray praised his team and highlighted that this is the 20th vessel delivered by the yard.  He said:

“Bañaderos Express is a real milestone for Austal Philippines as it is the 20th vessel constructed here at the Balamban shipyard since we opened in 2012. In just ten years our team have constructed 18 catamarans and two trimarans, including the two largest high-speed ferries ever built in the Philippines, for operators located around the world,”.

“This delivery of Bañaderos Express is even more significant, given the challenging COVID-19 environment in which we have operated over the past two years. Austal Philippines has successfully maintained productivity, while keeping our team safe during the pandemic.”

Bañaderos Express Key Data

Name:Bañaderos Express
Beam Moulded:28.48m
Draft:4.2m (max)
Main Engines:4 x MTU 20V8000 M71L Marine Diesel engines
Water Jets:4 x Kongsberg (KaMeWa) 125 S3
Speed:37.5 knots @ 85% MCR
Vehicles:Up to 276 cars or
350 lane metres for trucks and 100 car spaces
A more detailed technical data sheet is available from Austal here.